In-Person Ceremony Information

Information & Expectations

Graduate School Ceremony

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Ceremony starts at 10 a.m.
Graduates should arrive by 9 a.m.
Doors open for guests at 9 a.m.

Please review the information below and our FAQ’s

Undergraduate Ceremonies

Thursday, May 23, 2024

10 a.m.

College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences,
School of Social Work,
Erickson School of Aging Studies

Ceremony starts at 10 a.m.
Graduates should arrive by 9 a.m.
Doors open for guests at 9 a.m.

3 p.m.

College of Natural and Mathematical Sciences,
College of Engineering and Information Technology,
Individualized Study Program

Ceremony starts at 3 p.m.
Graduates should arrive by 2 p.m.
Doors open for guests at 2 p.m.

Please review the information below and our FAQ’s

Pre-Ceremony Checklist

Are you ready for Commencement ’24? Double check here…

  1. Apply for graduation with the UMBC Registrar by February 15.
  2. Register for commencement by 11:55pm EST on April 28. Check your UMBC inbox for an email on how to register. If you do not see an email, please contact
  3. Order your regalia via the UMBC Bookstore by April 28. Students are required to wear caps, gowns, and tassels when participating in-person.
  4. On May 1, you will receive your graduation passes and guest tickets via email. We will release as many tickets per student as space allows. At this time, we anticipate each graduate will receive 5 tickets. We will provide additional information on May 1.
  5. Print your GradPass. Log into Marching Order using your student ID email. This is only available for grads who registered for the in-person option.
  6. Undergraduates, claim your guest tickets via MarchingOrder. (Graduate Ceremony will not require tickets).
  7. Review emails from the planning team with logistical information.
  8. Arrive at the ceremony in your regalia.

Ceremony Location and Parking

Chesapeake Employers Insurance Arena: Directions and Parking Information

  • Parking is free and available across campus.
  • Shuttles will be available to take guests to and from the Chesapeake Employers Insurance Arena from the following lots. (You can also find where the shuttle is using the shuttle tracker.)
  • Limited handicap parking spaces are available directly in front of the arena (permits required)

Arrival Information for Graduates

  • Graduates must arrive one hour prior to their ceremony start time. Graduates arriving late may not be able to join the procession of students and may not be seated with their major. You must be on time. Plan for heavy traffic on campus.
  • Follow posted signs to the graduate entrance. Graduates will enter using the lower level doors by the Auxiliary Gym entrance. This entrance is to your right when you are standing in front of the arena.

You MUST bring:

  • GradPass printed from Marching Order (log into Marching Order using your student ID email to print your GradPass).
  • Regalia. It is best to be wearing it when you arrive as there is no robing area. For more information on regalia, visit our UMBC Regalia page.
  • Do not bring personal items into the arena with you. Once you cross the stage you may not return to your original seat and there is no secure area for you to leave your belongings.

Ceremony Logistics and Expectations

  • Once you arrive, volunteers will direct you to the area in which you will line up. Lineup order will be by school, program and alphabetical by last name.
  • When it is time to walk across the stage, volunteers will direct you. Make sure you have your GradPass out and ready to go before you leave your seat.
  • Students are not permitted to carry props or accessories with them across the stage. This includes signs, posters, noisemakers, flags, or other large objects. Small bags worn on the body are permitted but not recommended.
  • In order to keep the ceremony moving, please proceed across the stage when and as directed by a staff member. You will have a chance to shake hands with campus leaders but please keep moving as you do (i.e. please do not stop to take a selfie).
  • After you return to your seat, remain in your seat until the end of the ceremony and the procession of the Platform Party. All graduates will remain in their seats until the Platform Party has left


The Undergraduate Ceremonies require all guests over age two to have a ticket to enter the arena. The Graduate School ceremony does not require guests to have tickets. All graduates will be allotted the same number of tickets. At this time, we anticipate each student will receive 5 tickets. The exact number of tickets will be determined and released on May 1.

Graduates are responsible for claiming and distributing their own guest tickets via Marching Order. Instructions on how to do this will be emailed to the graduate’s UMBC email on May 1. We are unable to accommodate requests for additional tickets.

Livestream & Photography

The ceremony will be streamed live for those who cannot attend in person. You can find the link to stream the ceremony the day of Commencement on our Homepage. The recording will be stored on the UMBC YouTube page after the event.

After the conclusion of Commencement ’24, individual student portraits will be available for purchase via GradImages.


Undergraduate diplomas are not distributed at the commencement ceremony. Students can expect to receive their diploma at their mailing address 4 to 6 weeks after their degree has been conferred.

Ph.D. and M.F.A. candidates’ diplomas will be mailed to the address listed on your Diploma Application after your degree is conferred on May 22, 2024. Master’s degree candidates’ diplomas will be mailed to the address listed on your Diploma Application approx 8 weeks after the May 22, 2024 conferral date. Expect diplomas to be delivered toward the end of July 2024.

Guest Information and Expectations

  • Doors for guests will open one hour before the ceremony start time.
  • For the undergraduate ceremonies, individuals over the age of two years old must have a ticket to enter the building. Graduates must log into their Marching Order account to claim their tickets. Tickets are not required for the Graduate Ceremony.
  • Balloons, food, and drink are NOT permitted inside the arena.
  • Signs and noise makers are NOT permitted.
  • Strollers may not be brought into arena seating. You may leave a small folded stroller in the lobby behind the Accessibility table at your own risk, at no liability to the Chesapeake Employers Insurance Arena or UMBC.
  • Guests requiring accessible seating may visit the Accessible Seating table in the arena lobby. Volunteers will assist with finding acceptable seating. We recommend that guests who need accessible seating arrive when doors open.
  • Guests and graduates will need to leave the building immediately after the ceremony. Plan to meet one another outside on the arena plaza.
  • Parking is free and available across campus
  • There are limited handicap parking spaces directly in front of the arena, proper permits are required for these spaces

Student Information and Privacy Concerns

  • Participation in UMBC’s Commencement ceremonies is voluntary as the Commencement is intended to be a community celebration of the successes of UMBC’s students. Participation in a Commencement ceremony is voluntary and does not affect the student’s graduation status or granting of their degree. All students that apply for and are approved to graduate will have their name, department, and degree published in the Commencement program book. Students who do not wish to have their name published must request this no later than April 15. Email to submit this request.
  • Students who register to participate in a Commencement ceremony will have their name, image, department, and major displayed at this public event. It will be displayed onscreen at the event, and during the video livestream of the event. In addition, UMBC will use photographs and video from this public celebration in official University publications and websites. The University owns and retains the right to crop or alter the photograph and video at its sole discretion.
  • Participation in the commencement ceremony requires the use of MarchingOrder, the graduation ceremony software solution industry leader. UMBC provides MarchingOrder with graduating students’ Directory Information necessary to provide essential services for graduates and families. This includes Student name, College, Dept, and Degree. We also provide Student ID, Email and Mobile phone (if it is a part of their UMBC account) allowing the graduate to create an account to gain access to graduation photographs, submit their name pronunciation, and to participate in the virtual ceremony. Any additional information requested by MarchingOrder is optional. The University only shares Directory Information and information that is necessary for MarchingOrder to perform this service that UMBC has outsourced.

If you have questions, please email